Paris’s Charles de Gaulle airport is currently testing facial recognition technology made by Portuguese firm Vision-Box. KLM is conducting a three-month trial of facial scanning technology at the Amsterdam’s Schiphol airport. Passengers must register at a kiosk near the gate to participate by scanning their passports, boarding passes, and, of course, their faces. Three-dimensional facial recognition scans measure dozens of features such as jawline and distance between the eyes.
European citizens with biometric passports can use special “ePassport” gates at major airports to get through border control, such as these in the UK, which are also open to citizens of other countries like the US and Canada who register in advance
In the United States, Global Entry patrons enter via booths that check people’s identities against biometric data. Private biometric screening company Clear also scans a passenger’s fingerprint or iris with speedy lanes available at 20 airports across the US, and Clear says it plans to expand to two others in the coming weeks. Passengers still have to go through security screening but enter through a dedicated aisle. The company said it has 700,000 members.
Moreover, it’s totally legal for a US Customs and Border Patrol officer to ask you to unlock your phone and hand it over to them. And they can detain you indefinitely if you don’t. Even if you’re an American citizen.
The latest credit card technology is an embedded computer chip. europe and other countries are already using the new chip cards. The main difference between the old cards and the new cards is that the data is static on a magnetic stripe, but changes with every transaction on an embedded chip card. (this is called dynamic authentication). Chip cards are more secure than the magnetic stripe cards. If a hacker steals the data from a magnetic stripe card, he has all the information necessary to use that card until the theft is discovered. Chip cards, on the other hand, create a unique transaction code every time the card is used, so stolen transaction data is useless. That’s not to say they are completely safe from fraud. But a security breach is far less likely to occur on a chip-enabled card.Chip cards employ EMV technology which stands for Europay, MasterCard and Visa, the original developers of the smart chip technology. Many U.S. credit cards already contain an embedded EMV chip. However most of these cards require signature validation, not PIN validation. In part, that’s because to make the full transition to chip-and-PIN cards, merchant card readers all need to be replaced with terminals that can handle the new technology.The goal of EMV technology is to thwart fraud and reduce resulting losses for everyone. To encourage full compliance with the new technology, Visa and MasterCard will shift liability for preventable fraud losses to merchants who don’t install the new machines. When traveling outside the U.S. you should request a chip-and-PIN (not chip-and-signature) card from your bank. In some parts of Europe, the transition to chip-and-PIN readers is nearly complete.
Eventually all U.S. credit cards will be chip-enabled. Current cards will be replaced by chip cards as they expire. The transition, which will take several years. Consumers in the U.S. should be able to pay using either a chip-enabled or a magnetic stripe card. In other parts of the world, however, shoppers may have trouble using a magnetic stripe card, particularly at unmanned kiosks or gas pumps.
ATM skimmers have become miniscule and thinner, with an extended battery life. Several miniaturized fraud devices have been pulled from compromised cash machines at various ATMs in Europe so far this year.
According to a new report from the European ATM Security Team (EAST), a novel form of mini-skimmer was reported by one country. Pictured below is a device designed to capture the data stored on an ATM card’s magnetic stripe as the card is inserted into the machine. Most card skimmers sit directly on top of the existing card slot, the newer mini-skimmers fit snugly inside the card reader throat. These newer skimmers are difficult to detect.
Mobile-powered skimmers allow thieves to have the stolen card data relayed via text message, meaning they never need to return to the scene of the crime once the skimmer is in place. MP3-based skimmers capture card data as audio waves that specialized software can later convert into card data.
ATM skimmers are still a problem in Europe, even though practically all cash machines there only accept cards that include so-called “chip & PIN” technology. Chip & PIN, often called EMV (short for Eurocard, MasterCard and Visa), is designed to make cards far more expensive and complicated for thieves to duplicate.
Regrettably, the United States is the last of the G-20 nations that has yet to transition to chip & PIN, which means most ATM cards issued in Europe have a magnetic stripe on them for backwards compatibility when customers travel to this country. Quite Naturally, ATM hackers in Europe will ship the stolen card data over to thieves here in the U.S., who then can encode the stolen card data onto fresh (chipless) cards and pull cash out of the machines here and in Latin America.
Countries where the ATM EMV rollout has been completed most losses have migrated away from Europe and are mainly seen in the USA, Asia-Pacific, and Latin America.
One of the easiest ways to protect yourself from ATM skimmers is to cover the PIN pad when you enter your digits.
Silicon Valley companies are flocking to Dublin, as their gateway to European and global success. Business writer Heather Somerville on the website http://www.contracostatimes.com reports; the start-ups don’t qualify for the tax breaks available to multi-nationals simply because they only apply to profits.
Start-ups are following Apple, Intel, Google and Facebook to Europe because it makes good business sense. Somerville reports that these startups are setting up their first overseas offices in the hope that the booming tech city of Dublin will become their launchpad to global success. San Francisco data software start-up New Relic have just made the commitment to Ireland. Chief marketing officer Patrick Moran says “It feels a little bit like a mini-San Francisco. All of our startup friends are there.”
New Relic opened a Dublin office in February and plans to hire about 50 employees at their first office outside the US.Chris Cook, president and chief operating officer at New Relic, added: “Dublin is the launching point for our European strategy and an essential part of our global expansion plans.”
Fellow San Francisco-based companies like Airbnb, cloud software company Zendesk and file storage and sharing startup Dropbox are also new to Dublin.
Yelp and Survey Money have announced plans to open a 100-person Dublin office.
Mark Harris is chief financial officer of Malwarebytes, an anti-virus software company in San Jose is expected to open in Ireland next year.